6/11/14

Hydration tips - swim, bike, run


I know you have them but do you use them properly?

Whew. Karel and I had one exhausting swim practice this morning with the Greenville Masters swim team (Greenville Splash)

The team is primarily master swimmers so the workouts are not specific to triathlons but, it sure is nice to be pushed by some fast swimmers and to suffer as a group. 

400 warm-up
Pre-set: 8 x 25's w/ fins (fast) w/ 15 seconds rest
5 x 100's kick build to fast w/ 20 sec rest

MS: 30 x 50's (rest 15 seconds, 10 seconds, 5 seconds by every 10)
#1 Drill, #2, Drill moderate intensity, #3 fast (repeating)

MS #2: 16 x 25's w/ paddles, fast (odd rest 5 seconds, even rest 10 seconds)

350 cool down

Total: 3300 yards

This was a speedy swim set with little rest between intervals and sets but I still had enough time to sip my bottle with 1 scoop Speed (infinit) to keep me fueled and hydrated for my 1-hour master swim workout. 

I often observe that many swimmers/triathletes do not bring water bottles to swim workouts and this is a must to have fluids during your swim workout. 

Regardless of the workout length or intensity, it is important to stay hydrated in the pool (and before/after) just like it is important to stay hydrated on the bike and run. 
Workout intensity, pool water temperature, outdoor temperature, previous hydration status and workout duration can all affect hydration needs in the pool. 
Although I highly recommend using a well-formulated, carb and electrolyte rich sport drink (~100-120 calories per hour) for a 45-90 min workout, every athlete should make sure he/she has a bottle of water available to quench the thirst at frequent intervals throughout a workout. 

Here are a few suggestions to help you meet your hydration needs during your swim, bike, run workout routine: 

Swim: 
-1 bottle of water per hour (or carb/electrolyte drink)
-Sip before practice and after as well as after warm-up and between sets/intervals. 
-Sip while your coach is talking or while you are chatting with your lane mates. 

Trimarni tip: 
If you find yourself starving after a swim workout or dreaming of food while you are swimming, I recommend to have at least 100-120 calories of a sport drink during your 60-90  min swim workout. Because many swim workouts are early in the morning (thus little time to digest a solid food snack, I recommend a low residue/carb dense snack such as a glass of juice, Banana, 2-3 figs, Buddy Fruit, Power Bar Fruit blends or applesauce. 

Bike:
-1 bottle of water per hour (or carb/electrolyte drink). 
-Drink in frequent intervals (1 gulp is around an ounce or two) every 10-15 minutes OR take 2-3 gulps (about 5 ounces) every 15 minutes depending on your drive to drink/course, etc. 
-Use solid food  (~30-80 calories of a piece of a carb dense sport bar) for tummy satisfying if needed and a sport drink to meet your carb, electrolyte and hydration needs - all in one bottle makes it easy to meet nutritional needs and for proper digestion and absorption.
-Be sure you are comfortable grabbing your bottles from their respective cages and be sure your bottles are not loose in their cages. An empty bottle is more likely to pop out than a filled bottle so be sure you are not using your favorite water bottles when you are training/racing. Always have a back up nutrition source in the case that you do lose a bottle.
-Always have a primary bottle that you will use each hour, in a place that you are most comfortable grabbing. 
-To avoid heartburn or burping, do not stay aero every time you sip from your bottle. Sit up and take a sip and then resume your aero position (practice taking a sip from your water bottle right now by leaning over as if you are in an aero position - it's not so easy at rest to sip and swallow so imagine what the body has to do to properly digest food/liquids when the body is crunched over)

Trimarni tip: 

I find that triathletes make bike fueling extremely complicated and I contribute a lot of that to the body simply getting use to digesting nutrition while exercising (which is something very unnatural for most human bodies). I have worked with many athletes who always report feeling hungry on the bike or just can not stomach only liquid nutrition but overtime, we work together and eventually, the majority of the athletes I work with move toward a primarily liquid fueling strategy and if needed, just use solid food (or the occasional gel) to keep the tummy happy.
As an example of why I feel it is important to use liquid nutrition (or to get your primary fuel from a bottle)....

Imagine sitting in your car and me telling that you that on your road trip, for the next 3-6 hours, that you must sip your water bottle every 10-15 minutes.While at rest, not a problem.
But, you tell me that you also want to snack on gummies, chews, gels, bars, sandwiches, candy, etc. during your trip and I am ok with that but I do remind you that all of that nutrition is tucked away in your seat pocket behind you. 
So as you start your drive, the sun is shinning you are feeling great and your sipping strategy goes great. By 1-hour you have finished 1 bottle of water (or electrolyte tab) but you are starting to get hungry. Ok, not a problem. You just carefully reach behind the seat, still trying to focus on the road while steering your car, and you grab whatever you can grab behind you.
You feel satisfied and then 20 minutes later, the worst storm you have ever driven in happens. Wind, rain, hills, traffic - there is so much to focus on and let's not forget that you were focused on holding x-mph for your entire ride. 
So right now, that water bottle is being neglected but it is the easiest to grab while you are keeping two hands on the wheel as much as you can.
But you get hungry and you can't stay focused without food. You fumble in the seat behind you while steering the wheel and then also remember that you have some food stashed away in your console between the seat (let's call this your bento box). You accidentally dropped a bar as you were reaching in the seat behind you which is kinda stressing you out. 
Now, let's imagine that all your nutrition was in a bottle and you could stay fueled, hydrated and mostly satisfied with your nutrition in a bottle. Consider how easy this is to focus on the road while you are biking as well as to prepare for the upcoming road trip with your bike.
This is just a simple example of why I feel it is effective and efficient to use sport nutrition products on the bike, primarily liquid nutrition.
I have designed many INFINIT custom drinks while allow me to customize nutrition for my athletes based on their individual needs. Just another way to make sport nutrition specific for each individual because there is no one product that works for everyone.  

RUN
The best suggestion I can give for your run training is to set up a fueling environment that allows you to stay fueled and hydrated every mile or 10 minutes. This is very important no matter how long/short your run is for your training routine requires consistency and not just 'getting through' workouts. Every workout is an opportunity to improve fitness but to also train the gut for race day. 
A few of my run fueling suggestions:
-Gel flask  - filled with NAPALM (powder - 1 ounce = 50 calories) or your gel of choice (start with 1 gel per hour) diluted with water. Aim for an additional 12-16 ounces of water per hour. Sip frequently every 10 min or mile.
-Other brands I recommend for running: OSMO, SKRATCH or my fav, Clif HYDRATION
-Fuel belt - aim for at least 16 ounces of fluid per hour. You can carry water with you for sipping/cooling but I also recommend to have at least 16 ounces of fluid mixed with a sport drink for 20+min brick runs or runs over 45-60 minutes.
-Camel back or hand held bottle - aim for 120-150 calories of sport drink  mixed with 20-24 ounces per hour, do not overconcentrate your bottles (same with the bike - plan to refill bottles with powder - no more than 350-380 calories per bottle for all athletes). Sip every 10 minutes or mile. 
-Set up your course for out and back or short 30-40 minute loops and bring enough nutrition with you that you have calories/electrolytes/fluids to last for 30-40 minutes (~50-80 calories). Then each loop or out and back you can refill at your "aid station". 

Trimarni tip: 
One of the most common mistakes I find triathletes/runners making (of all racing/training distances) is not using sport nutrition during run workouts to enhance training and to train the gut. Then comes race day and the athlete is afraid of bonking or risking fatigue and then a non-practice fueling plan is created just for race day. Train yourself in training with nutrition that will help you take your training to the next level. Your goal with your fueling strategy is to stay fueled and hydrated and to meet electrolyte needs. Race day requires you to use your current level of fitness so by emphasizing sport nutrition properly in training, there is a good chance that by race day you will be fit to perform and confident with your fueling strategy.